Travel Agent Appreciation

ACTA Tracks The Trends At Summit

ACTA welcomed about 100 of its members to Toronto’s St. Regis Hotel for its day-long Travel Industry Leadership Summit.

Along with updating those attending on ACTA’s activities and priorities the event featured keynote addresses by association president, Wendy Paradis; disruption strategist, Shawn Kanungo; and Boeing’s regional director of product marketing, Christine Walsh.

As well, there were sessions on “NDC and One Order: Is Modernizing Distribution Evolution or Revolution?; and Navigating the Multi-Level Distribution Strategies of Air, Land And Sea and Everything in Between.”

In her presentation, Paradis outlined a number of ACTA’s key priorities for 2020 and beyond, noting that along with representing the interests of its members across Canada, the association also is an active participant in global industry groups.

Paradis pointed out the audience on hand that geopolitical issues, safety and security, the Boeing 737 Max situation, overtourism, the environment and regulatory issues were common areas of concern and action for ACTA and agency associations around the world.

And while many of those issues make agents wonder at the stability of the world, Paradis pointed to the good news – tourism continues to grow at a rate of 5% annually and that leisure travel leads that growth, with 56% of all leisure transactions being generated by travel agencies.

As for what members want from ACTA, Paradis said that a recent survey indicates that they see the association’s lobbying efforts as critical and want those to continue. Members also like the fact that ACTA promotes the use of a travel agent to consumers.

She continued that members also want the association to work with suppliers to build a respectful and equitable relationship with them and ensure that they recognize the value of agents in the distribution chain.

As for some key trends and issues that ACTA is tracking these days, Paradis pointed to the rapid advancements in technology; the continuation of mergers and acquisitions; consumer protection; and the continued growth of the home-based, blended work environment.

In the photo

Seen here, from l to r, at the Canadian Travel Industry Leadership Summit in Toronto yesterday, are ACTA president, Wendy Paradis and Brian Robertson of Vision Travel.

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